Game Time: 6 p.m. EST at the BMO Harris Bank Center
GRIFFINS (15-9-2-2) at Rockford IceHogs (12-10-2-4)
Griffins Game #29 * Road Game #14 * AHL Game #420
Season Series: 1-0-2-0 Home Series: 1-0-1-0 Road Series: 0-0-1-0
All-Time Series: 41-29-5-8 All-Time Home Series: 28-10-2-2 All-Time Road Series: 13-19-3-6
Griffins at IceHogs
Fourth of 10 meetings overall, second of five at the BMO Harris Bank Center…Rockford has won each of the last two matchups by a 3-2 count in overtime...Turner Elson and Filip Zadina both have two goals to lead the team in the season series...Grand Rapids has points in seven straight against Rockford (5-0-2-0) after a seven-game winless streak (0-4-0-3 from April 1-Dec. 23, 2017)...Former Griffin Derek King is the interim head coach of the IceHogs after Jeremy Colliton was brought up to coach the Blackhawks on Nov. 6…King played in Grand Rapids from 1999-01 and 2002-04 and is the franchise’s all-time leading playoff scorer (16-25—41) and ranks fifth in regular season points (73-130—203)…AHL firsts vs. RFD: Givani Smith first goal (Dec. 7, 2018 at RFD), Colin Campbell first goal (March 29, 2014 vs. RFD), Jake Chelios first point (April 18, 2014 at RFD) and Vili Saarijarvi debut and first point (Oct. 28, 2017 at RFD)...Derek Hulak made his Griffins debut in the last game at Rockford on Dec. 7 and potted a goal.
Nightmare on Elm Street
The BMO Harris Bank Center, which lists its mailing address on Elm Street, lately has been a tough venue for the Griffins as they are winless in their last seven trips there (0-3-1-3) and have not come out with a victory since March 25, 2017 (4-0 W). On the flip side, Grand Rapids has points in six in a row (5-0-1-0) over the ‘Hogs at Van Andel Arena and in 10 of the last 11 (9-1-1-0). Since the 2012-13 campaign, Grand Rapids is 22-4-2-1 (0.810) against the IceHogs at the Van and 11-12-1-4 (0.482) at Rockford.
Last Game (Saturday): Admirals 4 at Griffins 5 SO - Read the full recap here
Grand Rapids twice rallied back from a two-goal deficit, trailing 2-0 at 2:27 of the first period and 4-2 at 11:04 of the second…The Griffins held Milwaukee to 16 shots overall, including two in the third period, and both matched season bests for attempts in a game and in a single frame...After allowing two goals in the opening 2:27, Grand Rapids notched two power play tallies in a 1:20 span later in the first stanza...Dominic Turgeon was the only scorer in the three-round shootout.
First Things First
Three Griffins scored their first goals of the season in last night’s come-from-behind victory. Defenseman Trevor Hamilton, playing in his seventh career AHL game, banked his first AHL goal at 13:25 of the first period on the power play. Dylan Sadowy potted his first goal since Jan. 21, 2017 when he lit the lamp 1:01 into the third. Defenseman Joe Hicketts, who began the year with the Detroit Red Wings and was playing in his 19th AHL game of the season, picked a good time for his first of the year when he tied the game with 1:17 remaining in regulation.
The Griffins snapped a four-game winless streak (0-2-2-0) with a come-from-behind 5-4 shootout victory last night against the Central Division-leading Milwaukee Admirals. Grand Rapids has recorded points in 17 of its last 21 games (13-4-2-2) and currently sits in third place in the division. In the final leg of a three-in-three weekend, the Griffins take on Rockford this evening for the second time in three days. Today marks the end of Grand Rapids playing 14 Central Division opponents in a row, as the Griffins return home to face the North’s Cleveland Monsters on Wednesday.
Back Up Terr
The AHL’s leading scorer from a season ago, Chris Terry is atop the league’s goal leaderboard with 17 and has found twine five times in the last seven games. His power play tally on Friday night marked his 200th career goal in the AHL. The 10th-year pro also shows points in nine of the last 11 contests, racking up 12 (6-6—12) in that span. Since Nov. 1, Terry has a league-high 14 goals and his 23 points in that period tie for fifth.
Sixth-year pro and second-year Griffin Turner Elson ties for the league lead with three shorthanded goals after picking up another one on Friday night. Three shorties is the most by a Griffin in a single season since Landon Ferraro and Tomas Nosek both collected three in 2014-15. Elson is the 21st player in team history to log three or more SHG in a season. Notching his 10th goal on Friday, he has reached double digits for the third time in his AHL career and first since 2015-16. With 24 points, Elson has already bettered his output from 2017-18 (9-21—21 in 57 GP) and is on pace for 65, which would more than double his previous best of 30. Elson shows 10 points (5-5—10) in the last nine games and 18 (8-10—18) in the last 16.
Power is Back
The Griffins have converted on the man-advantage in a season-high three consecutive games, operating at 30.8% (4/13) during the stretch. Filip Zadina and Matt Puempel tie for the team lead with three power play goals apiece.
After dropping their first four away games, the Griffins have points in six of their last nine (5-3-1-0). On foreign ice, Chris Terry has a team-high 12 points (7-5—12) followed by Turner Elson’s nine (4-5—9).
Central of Attention
The Griffins close a stretch of playing 14 Central Division opponents in a row today. During the span, Grand Rapids has gone 8-2-2-1 (0.731) and climbed from seventh in the Central to its current position in third.
Between the Pipes
Harri Sateri has points in six of his last seven starts (5-1-1), including two wins in overtime and one in a shootout. Patrik Rybar has collected points in nine of 12 starts this season – his first in North America – and is ninth in the AHL with a 2.55 GAA.
This Date in Griffins History
1999: NHL veteran Derek King is assigned to Grand Rapids by the St. Louis Blues. He goes on to finish fourth on the team in scoring with 49 points in just 52 games.
2012:The Griffins fire 31 shots on goal but are shut out for the second straight game, falling 5-0 at Toronto.
2015:Anthony Mantha scores a pair of second-period goals while Jared Coreau stops 47 shots as the Griffins set a franchise record with their 12th consecutive win, 3-2 at Lake Erie.
2017: Missing nearly 40 percent of their goal scoring from their lineup due to injuries or illness, the Griffins do everything but win, dropping a 2-1 overtime decision at home to Milwaukee. With Matt Puempel, Eric Tangradi, Matt Lorito and Turner Elson – the team’s top four point producers – all sidelined, the Griffins outshoot the Admirals 32-28, go 1-for-3 on the power play and kill off all six Milwaukee power plays.
Photo by Sam Iannamico/Griffins